Property Lawyer for Newbie in Perth

I'm posting on behalf of a friend who is about to buy a PPOR in Perth. He's been asking me for advice and I let him know that standard RE contracts are worded to look after the seller rather than the buyer. He is interested in having his own clauses worded to cover himself so that he's not potentially caught out and stuck in a contract for a house that turns out to have something wrong with it, or some other hiccup happens. Nothing too fancy, just things like finance and building inspection to buyer's satisfaction, that sort of thing.

I've got an IP in Qld but it was bought to renovate so we expected anything and everything to be wrong with it so didn't have too much altered in the contract wording. There are helpful suggestions on SS but I'm not sure if/how things need to be reworded in WA, and I don't know what is and isn't covered by the standard contracts eg. what is covered by potentially ambiguous terms like "major structural defect". As there's no cooling off period in WA, my friend is obviously pretty keen to have this stuff done correctly when making an offer.

He took my advice to seek some legal advice to get a better understanding of things. While he has a property in mind he wanted general advice initially before organising a contract for an individual property. He has a limited time to buy and settle a property before his access to a DHOAS (Defence Force) loan expires so he wanted advice relating to this as he wants clauses worded to protect his interests but not to the extent that sellers are reluctant to accept an offer made by him and he finds himself racing the clock to buy a property.

I went with my friend to see a lawyer and he explained his situation and that he wanted general advice initially. I think she must have made some sort of initial snap judgement relating to his inexperience, and she preceded to be very condescending and in slightly nicer words implied that he was an idiot for coming to her for general advice on contract wording. She even told him it was "inappropriate" that he wanted to seek advice without an individual offer he's about to submit. In my dealings with property and other lawyers, I've never seen anything like this and I was really taken aback by it all.

I thought she must have misunderstood what my friend was asking for so explained to her myself the purpose of our visit ie. that we wanted to discuss contract wording/clauses that would be relevant to any house my friend may make an offer on. She agreed to help us at this point but her general demeanour didn't improve much so when she briefly left the room a minute later we decided to leave. She came back and we played dumb and said that we thought she was right and perhaps we really didn't know what we were doing so we would go away and come back when we did.

So I'm after recommendations for a conveyancing or related lawyer in Perth who would be happy to help us. I've detailed everything above so that people can understand where my friend is coming from and that he would like to get advice from someone who will be receptive to answering his questions. He's green but wants to learn!

I'd also love to hear any other advice people may have for my friend in his situation, contract-related or otherwise eg. pitfalls as a first home buyer, ways people have been caught out, things you wish you'd known when you first bought a property etc. Any tips would be greatly appreciated!
 
Lawyers don't like giving advice on hypotheticals as a general rule. I'm not excusing what the lawyer did, but I can guess that is where their position came from anyway.

To be honest though, it doesn't sound like your friend needs any legal advice yet - more like general info on what are the general pitfalls and common ways to get around them.

You could probably get that from anyone here on the forum from WA.

EDIT: You could get the same from a lawyer, but it will probably cost around $350/hour for it.
 
Get him to email me, I'm happy to give him the building and pest one I use - it's a billion times better than the ones you get from the RE.
 
Melissa Dixon at MDH Legal do legals and conveyancing. She has given me a lot of good advice and helped me through a few sticky situations.

The clauses or annexures he needs will depend on what type of deal he is looking to buy.

The standard finance clauses on the O&A are very plain and straightforward but should be carefully filled out.

Other Subjects Tos might be related to building, pest, early access, permission to have surveys done, permission to have a photographer come through to take photos for a rental ad, permission to have one open for rental viewing in the week before settlement, permission to lodge a DA before settlement the list goes on.
 
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